Missionaries of Merciful Love (MML)
Rule of Life
“Follow me.” (Matthew 16:24)
Patrons: St. Faustina Kowalska,
St. Therese of the Child Jesus
and St. Francis of Assisi
“Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful”
1. God is calling us to be totally consumed by his merciful love,1 for “Our God is a consuming fire”2 We believe “The Lord is merciful”3 and “God is love.“4 We make our own the words of St. Therese, "In order that my life may be one Act of perfect Love, I offer myself as a Victim of Holocaust to Thy Merciful Love."5 Contemplative prayer from the heart will be the foundation of our day and entire life.6
2. The highlight of our day will be our communion with Jesus when we receive his most holy Body and Blood.7 “He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood lives in me, and I in him.”8 Our whole ministry draws its strength from this unique sacrifice.9 We will do our best to have a holy hour of Eucharistic Adoration every week.
3. We wish to be gentle, humble and see Jesus in others, showing merciful love to them: “Because you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.”10 St. Francis of Assisi is a model for us of Gospel living and love for the poor.11
4. We wish to do God’s will joyfully,12 for Scripture says, “Your will be done”13 and “Rejoice in the Lord always!”14
5. We want to live in simplicity.15 We seek to learn from “the simplicity that is in Christ.”16
6. We desire and wish to strive for holiness, for the Lord says, “You shall be holy to me; for I, the Lord, am holy, and have set you apart from the peoples, that you should be mine.”17 Jesus said, “Be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.”18 We will do our best to have a monthly silent retreat at home or at a retreat centre.
7. We want to trust in Jesus totally. St. Faustina Kowalska is a model for us of trust in Jesus.19 She said, “O sinner, you must not doubt or despair. But trust in mercy, for you also can become holy.”20 We trust in Divine Providence for all of our needs, for “The Lord will provide.” 21
8. We want to be gentle22 and humble, for Jesus said, “Learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart” 23 We desire to heed the advice given to St. Faustina, “Let simplicity and humility be the characteristic traits of your soul.”24
9. We will do all things with the Blessed Virgin Mary, the “Mother of divine mercy,”25 as her loving children, imitating her complete self-giving,26 and heeding her words about Jesus, “Whatever he says to you, do it.”27
10. We seek to renew the church through prayer, fasting and witness, echoing the invitation, “Let us implore God's mercy for the present generation.”28 We know "There is no holiness without renunciation and spiritual battle"29 We will do our best to attend the Sacrament of Reconciliation at least once a month.30
11. We seek to be constantly led by the Holy Spirit in all our thoughts, words and actions, “For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are children of God.”31 We want to use the gifts of the Holy Spirit, especially the charismatic gifts, for Jesus said, “You will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you.”32
12. We wish to spread the Good News of salvation in Jesus:33 "Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations.”34 We will do whatever is within our power to spread devotion to Divine mercy.35 We will use the talents God has given us for his glory. We seek to live out the invitation of Pope Francis, “To follow Jesus means to share his merciful love for every human being.”36
May all who observe these things be blessed in Heaven from God our merciful Father and on earth by his only beloved Son Jesus, our merciful Savior, in union with the Spirit of merciful love and all the angels and saints in Heaven. 37
*MML Rule of Life written with consultation from Sister Marilyn Kelly, GSIC, Sister Claire Marie OSC and Jean Work, SFO, September 5, 2001. Second Revision: August 28, 2008, Memorial of St. Augustine, Bishop. Third Revision: With consultation from Cyndie Mason mml and Rev. Stanislaus Kuczaik, SChr, March 19, 2014, Solemnity of St. Joseph, Spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Fourth Revision: July 20, 2018. Fifth Revision: May 9, 2020
Diary of St. Maria Faustina Kowalska: Divine Mercy in My Soul © 1987 Marian Fathers of the Immaculate Conception of the B.V.M. Stockbridge, MA 01263. All Rights Reserved. Used with permission.
1 Cf. Rule of the Secular Franciscan Order (SF0), Prologue, Chapter 1.
2 Hebrews 12:29
3 Psalm 103:8
4 1 John 4:8
5 Act of Oblation to Merciful Love [AOML], Story of a Soul, translated by John Clarke, O.C.D.
6 Cf. SFO, Chapter II,, par 8.7 Cf. Ibid. 8 John 6:56
7 Cf. Ibid.
8 John 6:56
9 Cf. Catechism of the Catholic Church [CCC], 1566.
10 Matthew 25:40
11 Cf. SFO, Chapter II, par 4.
12 Cf. Ibid., par. 19.
13 Matthew 6:10
14 Philippians 4:4
15 Cf. SFO, Chapter II, par. 11.
16 2 Corinthians 11:3
17 Leviticus 20:26
18 Mt 5:4-8
19 Cf. St. Faustina Kowalska, Diary: Divine Mercy in My Soul [DMMS], 239.
20 DMMS, 522.
21 Genesis 22:14
22 Cf. SFO, Chapter II, par. 13.
23 Matthew 11:29
24 DMMS, 55.
25 Pope John Paul II, Dives in Misericordia [DM], V, 9.
26 Cf. SFO, Chapter II, 9.
27 John 2:5
28 DM, VIII, 15
29 CCC, 2015; cf. 2 Tim 4:6
30 Cf. SFO, Chapter II, par 7.
31 Romans 8:1432 Acts 1:8
32 Acts 1:8
33 Cf. SFO, Chapter II, par 6.
34 Math 28:19.
35 Cf. DMMS, 1074.
36 Pope Francis, Twitter, September 12, 2013.
37 Cf. St. Francis of Assisi, Testament.